Behavior of surfactants and surfactant blends in soils during remediation: A review

Wen Ji, Charbel Abou Khalil, Meghana Parameswarappa Jayalakshmamma, Lin Zhao, Michel C. Boufadel

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Using surfactants for the remediation of aquifers is more challenging due to the interaction with soils of heterogeneous chemistry and potential toxicity concerns. In this review, surfactant types were introduced and factors affecting their performance were discussed. An improved approach of surfactant blends was reported with cases. The current document has three goals: 1) summarize the fundamentals in surfactant enhanced aquifer remediation, including the adsorption of hydrocarbons on soil and the mobilization and solubilization of hydrocarbons by surfactants; 2) evaluate the impact of soil geochemistry on surfactants; and 3) interpret the enhancement techniques in applying surfactants in soil remediation. Though such techniques are observed impacted by various factors, by looking into the theories and case studies, this review is expected to provide a tool to help engineers select proper methods in soil remediation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number100007
JournalEnvironmental Challenges
StatePublished - Jan 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Global and Planetary Change


  • Soil remediation
  • Sorption
  • Surfactant
  • Surfactant blends


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